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Humboldt County Supervisors begin structuring advisory committee

EUREKA- Humboldt County Board of Supervisors began working to structure a new citizen advisory committee at their meeting on Friday. The committee will be tasked with overseeing revenue generated by Measure Z, the new countywide half-cent sales tax.

On Friday, the supervisors worked to find a balance between citizen representation and expert presence within that appointed group. During the meeting, the supervisors discussed whether committee should be made up of only citizens, or if professionals from the sheriff’s office or fire department can also be voting members in the group.

After public comment from both departments the supervisors agreed that public safety and fire should be represented in some way to provide knowledge and guidance to the financial decisions.

“I’m pleased in the end that it sounds like fire will have a seat at the table and again we understand that others have interests and there's going to be competing thoughts on who gets what, but we just want a seat at the table and be able to voice our concerns and our needs out there,” said Ken Woods, president of the Humboldt County Fire Chiefs Association.

The board motioned to create a committee of nine, with 5 members appointed by district, 2 members at large appointed by the board, and 2 other representatives from public safety and fire.

The supervisors instructed county staff to bring the issue before the board again on December second with options on how those positions should be filled. At that meeting, the supervisors will determine whether or not the two representatives from public safety will be voting members of the committee.

Because the new tax begins accruing revenue April 1, the new committee must be structured and selected by February.